Clayton Kershaw looks to continue his tremendous start to 2016, and looks to finish off his amazing May with the series finale between the Dodgers and Mets on ESPN Sunday Night Baseball.
Kershaw enters Sunday leading the majors in innings pitched (79), strikeouts (95) and ERA (1.48), and so far has walked only five batters all season.
He is lasting deeper into games this season, averaging 7.9 innings per start and lasting at least seven frames in all 10 starts so far. Kershaw is the first Dodgers pitcher since Fernando Valenzuela in 1981 to last at least seven innings in his first 10 starts. The last one to make it 11 straight was Don Sutton in 1972.
Kershaw also enters Sunday night having one of his finest months. He is 5-0 with an 0.64 ERA in May, with 55 strikeouts against only two walks and three runs allowed in 42 innings, including three shutouts.
Kershaw won't beat his best monthly ERA, when he allowed one run in 33 innings (0.27 ERA) in four starts in July 2015. But he can match or beat his monthly highs in wins (six, in June 2014), strikeouts (65, in Sept./Oct. 2015) and innings (47⅔, Sept./Oct. 2015) with a strong performance on Sunday.
In addition, the MLB record for most strikeouts in a month with two or fewer walks, dating back to 1913, is 62, by Curt Schilling in May 2002.
Kershaw made his second career start, back on May 30, 2008, against the Mets in New York, but at Shea Stadium. He allowed four runs on five hits with four walks and two strikeouts, and couldn't get out of the fourth inning in a no-decision.
Since then, Kershaw has made five starts in New York against the Mets, all at Citi Field, including the playoffs, and has allowed four total runs in 33⅔ innings, with a 1.07 ERA, 39 strikeouts and 10 walks.
Time: 5:05 p.m. PT